I saw this cartoon during the week and LOL!
All too often I have I sat in meetings where this sentiment never actually made it out into the open but greatly influenced outcomes. Of course, we don’t need to go to church or be a Christian to understand that “a journey of transformation without requiring any real changes” is not possible. Neither is it Biblical.
We have a heard a lot about metanoia this week as we trained to be DTS staff. Metanoia is the Greek word for repent, be transformed of the mind, change the way you think. Merriam-Webster says it is “a transformative change of heart; especially : a spiritual conversion.” The word is used 22 times in the New Testament. Jesus speaks of this kind of change several times, my favourite is in Luke 15:7 “I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.” In Romans 12:2 Paul says “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” While metanoia is a transformative change, Paul speaks of transformation using the greek word metamorphoo, from which we get metamorphism, the process through which a caterpillar becomes a butterfly. When we accept Christ we should look different. Paul says “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” just as the caterpillar is recreated as a butterfly, transformed people should be very noticeably changed.
The DTS is a Discipleship Training School. A disciple is a follower of a teacher or mentor, in Christian terms it usually refers to a follower of Jesus. We can assume that disciples follow teachers because they are learners and want to learn more. Much of being staff at a DTS is about friendship, it is about sharing the journey. We will be walking alongside others who are heading to the same place; helping them along the way; lifting them up and encouraging them, acting as a guide along the path. A DTS is all about transformation, caterpillars becoming butterflies. We are privileged, and humbled, to be companions on this journey. (To our Cursillo friends, you may remember I have described DTS as a Cursillo weekend on steroids.)
So this week we learned a lot. We heard about the history of the University of the Nations (click to watch a 15 minute video), and the DTS curriculum; we reviewed the Belief Tree, which we learned about during Family Week last year. We learned about Cultivating an Atmosphere of Worship and Intercession; Small Groups; One to Ones; Leadership Skills; Learning Styles; Outreach Finance training; International Awareness and Cross Culture; Spiritual Authority of Leaders and Staff; Classroom Management and Speaker Introductions; How to deal with students from difficult backgrounds; and Outreach topics. All of this was bracketed with amazing worship and prayer, times of hearing God’s voice and sharing with others.
Next week we train with Bob and Carolyn, our school leaders, on the specifics for the Crossroads School. We are still praying for more staff to join us, it is going to be a busy time for us, empowered by Holy Spirit!
On Thursday night at the weekly Community Worship the summer quarter teams were commissioned for their outreach phase by Loren Cunningham and other leaders and sent out to the nations. A new school, Apostello School of Frontier Missions sent out their first outreach teams to northern India, Turkey, and Nepal. Unlike a DTS, that goes out for 8-12 weeks, these teams are committed to a minimum 2 year outreach. There was great joy and heaven was celebrating with us.
It is so encouraging to see so many people already fired up for God getting their fires stoked! Ready to go out and make a difference in the world. Again we are impacted by the passion, hunger and wisdom all around us. Last week, the kitchen manager led one of the devotions, he spoke with great passion and quoted scripture all from his heart and that is so common here.
Be blessed and be a blessing, A&G